Paddy Power has poked fun at Leeds Utd’s “spygate” debacle in a promotional video to mark the impending start of the new Premier League season. Leeds will play in the top flight for the first time since 2004 after they won the Championship. They have iconic coach Marcelo Bielsa to thank for securing promotion, but he was embroiled in a scandal in January 2019 after he was caught spying on the Derby Country training ground in the build-up to their Championship clash. Rather than deny it, Bielsa admitted he spies on all upcoming opponents, and held a press conference replete with a PowerPoint presentation to explain his methods. Now Paddy Power has launched an ad featuring Leeds fans using any means necessary to spy on their rivals, with former Leeds legend Gordon Strachan leading the efforts.
Paddy Power and Ladbrokes are accused of allowing a disabled punter to gamble away the bulk of the settlement he received following a botched operation. Lawyers representing Liam McCarron claim that the two bookmakers failed to protect him after he displayed erratic play patterns. McCarron, a businessman who suffered “catastrophic” impairments to his movement and speech when an operation went wrong in 2007, lost more than £500,000. “The impact goes way beyond finances, though, as it has caused irreparable damage to my family relationships,” he said in a statement. “On top of that, I feel that I have lost my dignity and self-respect. “It has had an enormous impact on me. There is the obvious financial impact, in that the money I used to gamble was intended to be for my ongoing living costs and care needs, which are significant.”
Shay Segev, the new chief executive at Ladbrokes owner GVC, is in line for a £7million windfall after snapping up cheap shares in the firm. An incentive plan put in place back in 2016 has just allowed Segev to snap up almost 1.5 million shares at a substantially discounted rate of £3.17 apiece. GVC’s share price is now £7.86, so he could sell them immediately for a £7 million profit. The more was designed to underline his confidence in the company, but This Is Money speculated that some will see it as yet another generous bonus scheme for its top executives after previous chief executive Kenny Alexander pocked £77 million during his 13-year tenure. Segev earns a base salary of £675,000, and he is eligible for bonuses of up to £3.7 million per year.
Betfred has extended its sponsorship of the World Snooker Championship to at least 2022. The bookmaker has sponsored the tournament since 2009. Ronnie O’Sullivan just secured the title with a fine victory over Kyren Wilson, and Betfred immediately confirmed it would extend its sponsorship deal. “I’m delighted to extend my association with the World Snooker Championship and I would like to take this opportunity to thank WST, the Crucible, BBC, Eurosport and especially the players for putting this event on in such challenging times,” said Betfred chief executive Fred Done. World Snooker Tour chairman Barry Hearn added: “We have worked with Betfred on the World Championship for many years and we are delighted to extend the agreement. Over that time it has developed into a truly global event with a vast audience, and its reach continues to grow. More and more fans in an increasing number of countries tune in each year to watch history in the making. This year’s Championship has been one of the best. We look forward to working with the fantastic Betfred team for many years to come.”